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Page 168 - His Tale of a Tub has little resemblance to his other pieces. It exhibits a vehemence and rapidity of mind, a copiousness of images, and vivacity of diction, such as he afterwards never possessed or never exerted. It is of a mode so distinct and peculiar, that it must be considered by itself; what is true of that, is not true of anything else which he has written.
Page 284 - I know that the conquest of English America is an impossibility. You cannot, I venture to say it, you cannot conquer America.
Page 489 - I should grieve to see Reynolds transfer to heroes and to goddesses, to empty splendour and to airy fiction, that art which is now employed in diffusing friendship, in renewing tenderness, in quickening the affections of the absent, and continuing the presence of the dead.
Page 158 - After all this, it is surely superfluous to answer the question that has once been asked, Whether Pope was a poet, otherwise than by asking in return, If Pope be not a poet, where is poetry to be found?
Page 44 - It is not uncommon, for those who have grown wise by the labour of others, to add a little of their own, and overlook their masters. Addison is now despised by some who perhaps would never have seen his defects, but by the lights which he afforded them.
Page 242 - Millar told me that in a twelvemonth he sold only forty-five copies of it. I scarcely, indeed, heard of one man in the three kingdoms, considerable for rank or letters, that could endure the book.
Page 149 - Miscellany, in a volume which began with the pastorals of Philips, and ended with those of Pope. The same year was written the Essay on Criticism ; a work which displays such extent of comprehension, such nicety of distinction, such acquaintance with mankind, and such knowledge both of ancient and modern learning, as are not often attained by the maturest age and longest experience. It was published about two years afterwards ; and being praised by Addison in the Spectator* with sufficient liberality,...
Page 480 - Sir Joshua Reynolds was on very many accounts one of the most memorable men of his time. He was the first Englishman who added the praise of the elegant arts to the other glories of his country.
Page 42 - I must confess I am amazed that the press should be only made use of in this way by news-writers, and the zealots of parties : as if it were not more advantageous to mankind, to be instructed in wisdom and virtue, than in politics ; and to be made good fathers, husbands, and sons, than counsellors and statesmen.